Texting is tremendously popular because it's quick and easy. If only healthcare providers could text with their patients, right? You may soon get your wish.

Anthem recently announced that 40 million of its members would have quicker access to treatment options and the ability to text with doctors. The health benefits giant is partnering with K Health, a personalized health information company and creator of an app called K.

Patients use the K app's AI-based diagnoses and treatments references to learn how their condition might be treated based on their own medical history, age, gender and other biomarkers. From there, patients can chat with a doctor.

Anthem and K Health believe their new co-branded app, CareSpree, will improve access to care, eliminate long wait times and drive down overall costs.

Emerging Technology: So Near and Yet So Far?

Forward-thinking providers see text messaging applications as a better way to connect directly with patients - beyond phone calls and patient portals. HIPAA-compliant platforms like OhMD, TigerText, and Hale that offer secure texting and link to electronic health records are slowly gaining ground. It's just what providers need now.

Research shows that convenience and access are the most important factors in choosing a provider. Moreover, visits to primary care doctors have plummeted in favor of retail-based walk-in clinics. But what if you work for a practice that's not even close to offering this type of technology? How can you hope to compete?

Promote your Digital Engagement Assets

For starters, remind your patients you already have digital tools that can save them time and empower them to be involved in their care. Promote:

  • Patient portals. Chances are your patients have been slow to take advantage of their portals, especially if you serve a rural area. But data shows that portal use correlates with better clinical outcomes.
  • Physician emails through a secure patient portal might also be available to your patients.
  • SMS or text-based appointment reminders. Missed appointments are an inconvenience for both your practice and your patients.

Smart marketers should always look for ways to tout the benefits of their leading-edge capabilities.

Let Cox Health Marketing help your practice better position and market your convenience and access to care. Contact us today.